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Monday, November 3, 2008

Hourly Wage

My husband and I had the luxury of eating out the other night kid free. As I jog my memory, this is the first time we have gone out together since our 3rd anniversary in July. Once you throw a 2nd child into the mix of your life, it is close to impossible to get out for some alone time. Especially since it seems that no one is willing to babysit for two children under the age of two at a decent hourly wage.

We were fortunate enough to leave both kids with Papa and Upup while we were up in Osage for a weekend visit. Not only was this a free babysitter, but a guilt free evening knowing that grandparents are always willing to babysit their perfect grandchildren. Without any instructions, we handed off our babies to them and took off in their mini van to eat at a local bar and grill called Teluwut. The drive uptown was as quiet as a winter night. All we heard was the hum of the engine. We didn't talk until we parked and realized we didn't have to get two kids out of their carseats.

As we were seated, we didn't have to ask for a high chair and remove menu's, silverware, or other tableware out of the reach of a destructive toddler. We didn't have to ask for a booth or an extra highchair to put the babyseat in. We didn't have to worry about whether or not I would have to feed Bryce or worry about trying to order something for ourselves that picky eater Cailyn would also eat.

Instead, we were quietly seated, we each ordered a drink and before we ordered our dinner, we talked with no interruptions while we enjoyed our drinks. As our cheeks got rosey and warm and our bellies grew hungry, we ordered our dinners. Steak and shrimp were our meals of choice. While we waited for our food to arrive, we weren't trying to feed a child or color on a kids menu. Rather, we had weeks worth of events to discuss without getting interrupted by a crying baby. We considered ways to alter Cailyn's 2 year old behavior, we discussed daycare options, and we thought out loud about what they might be doing at home with Papa and Upup. In just three years our conversations have gone from weekends out with friends to the best diaper deals and spit up amounts.

We ate until our buttons were ready to pop off our pants and decided against dessert or an extra drink. As we waited for our bill, we laughed together as we watched the couple at the table next to us with their toddler, who had thrown french fries, pickles, and cheerios all over the floor. We understood the embarressment of leaving a restaurant with a mess trailing you and whispers of waitresses hoping we never return.

After paying our bill, we were lost. We had nothing to clean up. The floor beneath us was clean and nothing was stuck to the tabletop. All we had to do was get up and leave. We did just that, without looking back for a missing sippy cup, paci, or shoe.

Although our night out was only a hour long in reality, it was eternity in our eyes. We love our children dearly and wouldn't change our lives for anything, but every couple needs a night away once in awhile. Even if all you do while you're away is talk about your kids and go home immediately in hopes you get there early enough to kiss them goodnight.


Patti said...

Kudos! I just showed this blog to Brandon and we totally know how you feel. We had this same experience a week ago :)

Eric said...

Glad to hear you had a good time in O-town. I can't imagine what it's like having 2 children. I'm so used to being single (at least not married with children that is since I do have a girlfriend now) so being able to do what I want, when I want is the norm for me.